Simply Satisfying – slow cooked Pulled Pork

Southern Comfort.  I have a sneaking suspicion that you can put a pork shoulder into a *slow cooker all on its own (with no rub, sauce, etc.) and it will still turn out pretty darn tasty…but why chance it.  pulled_pork_sandwich This delicious ‘once on occasion’ recipe (as filed under guilty pleasures or football games) was served on buns this past weekend (with other food like stuffed peppers, etc.) as a request. 

Pulled Pork

One 3 or 4 lb. boneless pork shoulder (boneless is easier for shredding).  Have butcher roll and tie for you if it doesn’t come packaged that way.

Combine the following dry spices and rub them all over the pork.  Make sure you get all surfaces well covered.  Place seasoned pork in a bowl, cover and refrigerate overnight.

2 Tbsp. brown sugar

2 Tbsp. kosher salt

2 Tbsp. smoked paprika

1 Tbsp. black pepper

1 Tbsp. ancho chili powder (or any Mexican chili powder)

1 tsp. ground coriander

1 tsp. ground cumin

Next morning – remove the pork from refrigerator.

Put into slow cooker the following:

1/2 cup of water

1 cup of apple juice

1 cup of barbecue sauce (if you buy it try to get one with a smoky BBQ flavor – I like Kentucky wild whiskey or a wild hickory smoke).  See  homemade version below.

Juice of 1 lime

hot sauce, to taste

Add pork shoulder, cover & turn on low for at least 8 hours.

When done, remove roast from stoneware (slow cooker), and pull the meat into shredded pieces using two forks.  Pour out any liquid in the stoneware. Combine shredded pork with a chopped medium onion & put back into stoneware with about 1/2 cup of the reserved liquid & bit more barbeque sauce.  Turn on low for one more hour.  Keep warm until serving on hamburger buns or rolls.  Warm up extra BBQ for buns if needed.

*If you don’t have a slow cooker then put it into a covered roasting pan set on a low heat (250 F) for same amount of time.  Just be sure to check & baste periodically.

Homemade BBQ Sauce (great for ribs too).  A little more time but I promise it’s totally worth it:

2 Tbsp. tomato paste

1 Tbsp. dark brown sugar

1 Tbsp. molasses

1 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar

1 Tbsp. soy sauce

1 Tbsp. honey

1 Tbsp. ketchup

1 tsp. yellow mustard like dijon, Worcestershire sauce, garlic powder, onion powder and kosher (or Lawry’s seasoned) salt.

1 cup chopped onion (optional)

1/2 cup strong black coffee

dash of Louisiana-style hot sauce

(makes two cups)

Combine all ingredients in a saucepan.  Whisk thoroughly or combine with a hand-held blender to ensure there are no lumps.  Simmer over low heat while stirring frequently for 1 hour (this pasteurizes the sauce). Cool for at least 1 hour before transferring to an airtight container for storage.  Store for up to 1 month in the refrigerator but you can also freeze what you don’t use.

This will feel like summer all winter long

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